REVIEW: Those Magnificent Men, Sheringham Little Theatre

Transatlantic flight is a routine trip for business people and tourists these days.

But the first two men to do it non-stop nearly 100 years ago were plucky British aviators whose adventure was a ripping yarn of boy's story book proportion.

Ex RAF chaps in a converted bomber made of wood and canvas, trying back in 1919 to beat Johnny Foreigner in the race to cross the ocean in less than 72 hours and win a �10,000 prize.

Captain John Alcock at the controls in an open cockpit, Lt Arthur Whitten Brown navigating by the stars and climbing on to the wings to remove ice from the faltering engines.

This touring show which landed briefly on Wednesday night tells the tale, with a tongue firmly in the cheek next to the stiff upper lip of Ian Shaw as the dashing upright Alcock, while Richard Earl switches between his knockabout foil Brown and his actor self seeking to 'sex up' the story a bit to make it just as Hollywood as the journey of American Charles Lindberg who was the 104th person to make the crossing.

The action is non-stop, the script witty with moments of slapstick and pathos, the delivery slick and the creation of a Vimy biplane from tables, boxes and bin lids as marvellous - at least to the 'boys of a certain age' in the audience - as the Meccano models also used as props.

Jolly good show chaps.

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